The McCalmans   •     Burn the Witch

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  • Burn the Witch
    • 1978 - Transatlantic TRA 357 LP (UK)
  • Side One
    1. Fare Ye Well Ye Mormond Braes
    2. The Lion (Edinburgh Castle) (Lumsden & McCalman)
    3. Jenny Lasswade (Ian McCalman)
    4. Farewell to Nova Scotia
    5. She Had to Go and Lose It at the Astor (Doe & Doaques)
    6. Aye Waukin O
    7. Gin I Were Where the Gaudie Rins
    8. Veronica (Vreeswijk, McCalman & Hoydal)
  • Side Two
    1. Burn the Witch (Ian McCalman)
    2. Bonnie Lass o' Gala Water
    3. Jock Stewart
    4. March of the Cameron Men
    5. The Phantom Whistler & Random Jig
    6. Doon In the Wee Room
    7. The Recruiting Service Drum (Tannahill)
    8. Sons of Heroes

  • The McCalmans
    • Ian McCalman, Derek Moffat & Hamish Bayne
  • Musicians
    • Duncan Finlay: drums and bass guitar (Track: 8)
    • Ronnie Rae: Double bass and bass guitar
    • Douggie Alexander: Snare drum
  • Credits
    • Produced by Pete Kerr
    • Recorded at Castle Sound, Edinburgh, May/June 1978
    • Recording Engineer: Calum Malcolm
    • Sleeve photography by Castle Photographic Edinburgh
    • Design & Art by Bill Smith
    • © 1978 Logo Records.
    • All Trad. Arr. The McCalmans, unless otherwise noted


Fare ye well ye Mormond Braes
For oft times Ive been cheery
Fare ye well ye Mormond Braes
For its there I lost my dearie.

As I gaed in by Strichen toon
I heard a fair maid cryin
And she was making sair content
For her true love neer returnir,.

Theres aye good fish into the sea
As ever yets been taken
Ill cast my line into the sea
For Im only once forsaken.

Theres manys the horse has stappit and faen
And risen again richt early
Theres manys a lass has lost her lad
And found another richt early

Well Ill put on my gown o green
Its a forsaken token
And thats tae let the young lads ken
That the bonds o love are broken.

Well Ill go back to Strichen toon
Where I was bred and born
And there Ill get another lad
Will marry me ere the morn.


I am the lion Wallace saw
The same dour lion nane may thraw
Warder of old Scbtlands laws
I am the lion Wallace saw.

Centuries and ages flown
What hae they but honours thrown
Round my rugged brow and crown
Time neer steals away
I stand up to a declare
Scotlands weal and power my care
Tak this warning foes beware
Bide awa frae me.

Many ages I hae seen
Scotlands royal roost Ive been
Freedoms stronghold staunch serene
Bold and leal for aye
Freedom is the lions aim
Freedom for the lions ane
Match the lion in his den
Or let freedom be.

Here I stand and watch for aye
Roar the hour out day by day
Freedom strong to sound the sway
From far sea to sea
Freedom is the lions aim
Freedom for the lions ane
Match the lion in his den
Or let freedom be.

(Ian McCalman)

Jenny was a maiden from a village in Midlothian
And she would carry gentlemen across a stream
She put em on her shoulder for to wade across the water
And they had tae pay her half way there or she would drop em in.

People came frae Dalkeith Liberton and Gilmerton
Frae Colinton and Roslin and Penicuik too
They travelled in their carriages leading tae some marriages
And when a come tae think of if a think a saw you.

She carried any maiden or a mannie that is laiden
Wi his instruments o tradin just as long as she wis paid
And when the flow was heavy then she added tae her levy
And the people shouted - ready steady Jenny Lasswade.


O the sun was setting in the west
The birds were singing on every tree
All nature seemed inclined to rest
But still there was no rest for me.

Farewell to Nova Scotia your sea-bound coast
Let your mountains dark and dreary be
For when I am far away on the briny ocean tossed
Will you ever give a thought or a wish for me.

I grieve to leave my native home
I grieve to leave my comrades all
And my dear aged parents I love so well
And the bonnie bonnie lassie I do adore.

I have two brothers they are at rest
Their arms are folded on their breast
But a poor lonely sailor just like me
Must be tossed and driven on the deep blue sea.

For the drums they do beat and the wars do alarm
And the Captain calls we must obey
So farewell farewell to Nova Scotia shores
For its early in the morning I am far far away.


The balmy sunset breeze
Brushed the young girls innocent face
As she shyly bid her parents fond farewell
Her darling mothers tender voice
Whispered anxious last advice
Of the beastly world outside
To her did tell

But she had to go and lose it at the Astor
She didt take her mothers good advice
Now there arent so many girls to-day who have one
And shed never let it go for any price
They searched the place from penthouse to the cellar
In every room and underneath each bed
Once they thought they saw it lying on a pillow
But they found it belonged to someone else instead.

But she had to go and lose it at the Astor
She didt know exactly who to blame
And she couldn't say just how or when she lost it
She only knew she had it when she came
They questioned all the bellboys and the porter
The chef appeared to be the guilty guy
And the doorman also acted quite suspicious
But he coyly said Im sure it wasnt I.

But she had to go and lose it at the Astor
It nearly killed her mother and her dad
Now they felt as bad about the thing as she did
After all it was the only one she had
They just about completed all their searching
When the chauffeur walked up with it in his hand
All they did was stand and gape
There was Millies sable cape
Thats a helluva word for … at the Astor.


Aye waukin O Wauking aye and weary
Sleep I can get nane
For thinkin O my dearie.

When I sleep I dream
When I wake Im eerie
Sleep I can get nane
For thinkin O my dearie.

Lonely night comes on
A the love are sleepin
I think on my bonnie lass
And I bleer my een with greetin

Simmers a pleasant time
Mowers of every colour
The water rins oer the heugh
And I Iang for my true lover.


Ive roamed by Tweed Ive roamed by Tay
By border Nith and Highland Spey
But dearer far to me than they
The braes o Benachie.

Gin I were where the Gaudi rins
Where the Gaudie rins where the Gaudie rins
O gin 1 were where the Gaudie rins
At the back o Benachie.

When blades and blossom sprout in spring
And bid the birdie wag the wing
They blythly bob and soar and sing
At the foot o Benachie.

When summer deeds the varied scene
Wi licht o gowd and leave o green
Tis fain to be where oft Ive been
At the foot o Benachie.

When Autumns yellow sheaf is shorn
And barnyards stored wi stooks o corn
Tis blyth to climb the Clyach Horn
At the foot o Benachie.

When winter wind blows loud and shrill
Oer icy burn and sheeted hill
The ingle nook is gleesome still
At the foot o Benachie.

Though few to welcome me remain
Though a I lave be dead and gone
Ill back though I should live alone
At the fit o Benachie.


Veronica, Veronica, where is your hat of blue.
Hes searching in the dark night the man who thinks of you,
But now this man has gone away, he never will return
When the dawn breaks.

Veronica, Veronica, lift up your parasol,
The friend that came has left you never more to call,
Youll surely find another for they are scattered round,
When the dawn breaks.

But don't you think Veronica the morning it is grey?
And are you sometimes sorry that you let him go away?
Now think again Veronica and lift your telephone,
When the dawn breaks.

Veronica, Veronica, your long hair flowing free,
Look deep into your lovers eyes and into yours hell see
Fall into sleep and with him awaken in the morn.
When the dawn breaks.

(Ian McCalman)

There lived a wife in Pittenweem
And a gruesome cummer wis she
Nae glimpse o grace wis in her heart
Nor spark o humanity
Her een they goggled like a fiend
Her chin wis clad wi hair
And her crooked teeth pushed out beneath
Like tusks on a Lapland bear.

Burn the witch o Pittenweem
Burn the witch and her awful spell
Burn the devil in the witchs heart
Let her hurry on her way to hell.

And the screechin o the demons dark
Seemed music till her ear
And aye she called the Evil one
Her lord and her master dear
Hes gien her a staff intae her hand
Cut frae the gallows tree
Wi a varnish red frae the hangmans dead
And a skull for the eyes tae see

Now shes killed the heifer on the green
The lamb upon the lea
And mony a bonnie bairnie cried
That could never live or dee
The sheriff has sent his scouts abroad
And they sought baith east and west
Till they come to the cave as dark as the grave
Where they found her sleeping fast.

Well they built a fire around the hag
Twa Scots ells up and higher
And the hangman cam wi a lourin torch
Tae light the horrid pyre
An when the flames had reached her heart
She gaed an awful yell
And her spirit o sin it fell within
But where I canna tell.


Bonnie lass o Gala water, braw braw lass o Gala water
I would range the mountains so deep
For you bonnie lass o Gala water.

Sae fair her hair sae brent her brow
Sae bonnie blue her een and cheerie
I would range the length o the Isle
Tae get back home to my dearie.

Oer yonder moor oer yonder mountain
Oer yon bonnie hills together
O I would range the length o the Isle
My ain bonnie lass tae forgather.

Lords and lairds cam here tae woo
And gentlemen wi sword and dagger
But the black eyed lass o Galashiels
Would hae nane but the gree o Gala water


O my name is Jock Stewart
Im a canny gaun man
But a rovin young fellow Ive been

So be easy and free when your drinking with me
Im a man you don't meet every day.

I have acres of land
I have men at command
But Ive always a shilling to spare.

I took out my gun
And my dog for a shoot
Along the banks of the Spey.

So come fill up your glass
Of brandy or wine
And whatever the cost I will pay.


Theres many a man o the Cameron clan
That has followed his chief to the field
He is sworn to support him or die by his side
For a Cameron never can yield.

I hear the Pibroch sounding sounding
Loud oer the mountain and glen
While light spinging footsteps are trampling the heath
Tis the march of the Cameron men
Tis the march, tis the march,
Tis the march of the Cameron men.

O proudly they march but each Cameron knows
He may tread on the heather no more
But bravely he follows his chief to the field
Where his laurels were gathered before.

The moon has arisen it shines on that path
Now trod by the gallant and true
High high are their hopes for their chieftain has said
That whatever men dare they can do.


Doon in the wee room underneath the stair
Everybodys happy everybodys there
And were a makin merry each in his chair
Doon in the wee room underneath the stair.

And when youre tired and weary and youre feeling blue
Don't give way to sorrow Ill tell you what to do
Just tak a train tae Springburn and find the Quinns bar there
And go doon in the wee room underneath the stair.

The king he went a hunting his fortunes for to seek
He left the train at Partick and went missing for a week
And after months of searching sorrow and despair
They found him in the wee room underneath the stair.

And when Im old and feeble and my bones are getting set
Ill no get fat and grumpy like Ian and Derek get
Im saving up my bawbees tae buy a hurly chair
Tae tak me tae the wee room underneath the stair.


I hate the drums discordant sound,
Parading round and round and round,
To thoughtless youth it pleasure yields,
And lures from cities and from fields,
To sell their liberty for charms
Of tawdry lace, and glittring arms
And, when Ambitions voice commands,
March, fight, and fall in foreign lands.

I hate that drums discordant sound,
Parading round and round and round,
To me it talks of ravagd plains
And burning towns, and ruind swains,
And mangled limbs, and dying groans,
And widows tears, and orphans moans,
And all that Misrys hand bestows
To swell the list of human woes.


Sons of heroes slain at Flodden
Met to ride and trace our common
Oral fame tells how we got it
Hear the native muse relate it.

Help us help us Tyr and Odin
Sons of heroes slain at Flodden
Imitating border bowmen
Aye defend your rights and common.

Henry who to kingly splendour
Added that of faiths defender
Sped his troops by General Surrey
Threatening Scotlands right to bury.

Royal James on this occasion
Sent his order thro the nation
Heroes arm evince your bravery
Freemen scorn the chains of slavery.

Stunned with shrieks of thousands dying
Mid showers of darts and arrows flying
Sword in hand these gallant warriors
Firmly stood their countries barriers.

Royal James still urged the battle
Tho forewarned it would be fatal
Pressing hard the marshalled Southrons
Thus addressed the gallant Northerns.

Now the struggle was unequal
Dreadful carnage crowned the sequal
Hardy Scots borne down by numbers
Strewed the field in deaths cold slumbers.